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Kevin Love Scores 51 points 14 Rebounds & Seven 3 Pointers! Still Falls To OKC & Durant

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Published on Mar 23, 2012

OKLAHOMA CITY -- When Kevin Love drilled the most dramatic of his career-high seven 3-pointers during his first 50-point game over Russell Westbrook, he gave his former UCLA buddy a good ribbing.

At the end of the night, it was Westbrook who got the win.

Westbrook scored a career-best 45 points, Kevin Durant added 40 points and a season-high 17 rebounds, and the Oklahoma City Thunder overcame Love's 51 points to beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 149-140 in double-overtime Friday night.

"There's a lot of great performances throughout this game but the good thing about it was our team victory," Westbrook said.

Westbrook set the tone in the second overtime, stealing the ball on Minnesota's opening possession and racing to the other end for a layup that resulted in a three-point play.

The West-leading Thunder never trailed in the period and put it away with nine straight points after Nick Collison blocked Love's shot that would have tied it at 140.

"That's going to be a game that's going to be played for a while now," Durant said. "It was fun to be a part of. ... We made some big plays. Guys trusted each other, and that's what good teams do: make the right basketball play."

Love, who beat Durant in the 3-Point Contest on All-Star weekend, also pulled down 14 rebounds while becoming the third player to eclipse 50 points this season.

Durant (51) and New Jersey's Deron Williams (57) previously passed the half-century mark.

"It doesn't matter. We lost," Love said. "We needed this game, especially the last game of our road trip against a very good team. This could have definitely been a driving force for us in these last 17, 18 games."

Love, whose previous career high was 43 points, was 16-of-27 from the field and went 7-for-11 on 3s, hitting his first five attempts.

J.J. Barea complemented him with his first career triple-double -- and the first for Minnesota since Kevin Garnett did it in 2007. He had a season-high 25 points and a career-best 14 assists, and matched his best rebounding total with 10.

Anthony Tolliver chipped in a season-high 23 points for Minnesota, which was without second-leading scorer Nikola Pekovic (left ankle) and Michael Beasley (left big toe), and fell to 2-6 since point guard Ricky Rubio was lost to a season-ending knee injury.

"Everybody made plays when it counted," Love said. "There was just a concerted effort from their team in that second overtime. The ball bounced their way with a little bit of luck, and they made stops."

Love answered Durant's tiebreaking 3-pointer with 3.9 seconds left in regulation by hitting his own over Westbrook with just 1 second left to force overtime.

"That's my man, my main guy. Definitely talking trash out there, especially after he hit the one right in my face," Westbrook said.

"He said, 'In your face.' He just kept pointing, like, 'In your face, in your face.'"

Love then scored Minnesota's first eight points of the first overtime, but the Wolves couldn't close it out after taking a 129-124 lead on Tolliver's three-point play and fast-break dunk with 46.3 seconds left.

Westbrook hit a jumper in the lane, and, after Love was called for traveling, Durant drilled a 3 over his outstretched arm with 10 seconds left. Barea missed a potential game-winning 3, and Durant's heave from the opposite free throw line hit the backboard and rim.

Love couldn't keep it up in the second overtime, and the Thunder's tandem of All-Stars were finally able to put away their first consecutive wins in more than two weeks.


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